Not Dark Yet

Not Dark Yet

by Allison Moorer

CD

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Overview

Not Dark Yet

Despite singing together since they were old enough to talk, it took a lifetime for sisters Shelby Lynne and Allison Moorer to record together. United by blood, growing up in the backwoods of Alabama and sharing an unspeakable tragedy -- they witnessed their father take their mother's life and then his own -- their coming together on Not Dark Yet was perhaps inevitable, but it wasn't easy. The pair did a celebrated tour together in 2010 and tried to write a collective album afterwards. They ended up abandoning that project, but not the desire to collaborate. With empathic producer Teddy Thompson and a cannily chosen cast of studio aces -- among them guitarist Doug Pettibone, keyboardist Benmont Tench, and steel guitar player Ben Peeler -- they deliver nine cover songs chosen from the canons of rock, country, Americana, and pop before closing with a lone original. Commencing with the Killers' "My List," they deliver a love song as if facing one another, using the blood ties of sibling union as a hymn of commitment. Tench's piano and the twinned guitars of Pettibone and Val McCallum add a lonesome gospel feel to the languid, steely longing in the lyric. Jessi Colter's "I'm Looking for Blue Eyes" and Merle Haggard's "Silver Wings" are delivered with an intimate familiarity, as if the emotional truth these songs carry were part of their shared DNA. Bob Dylan's title track, penned as a metaphorical elegy to humanity, is underscored here. When Lynne follows her sister's lead, the mournful lyric is stretched toward ghost land where mercurial notions of loss and grief wrap around one another and bleed hard truths. Townes Van Zandt's "Lungs" is as steely as the original, but is articulated here through the clear lenses of country gospel and blues extending its reach out of death. Nick Cave's "Into My Arms" is a rootsy paean to enduring, committed love, while Nirvana's "Lithium" is not altogether successful because it's delivered with too much reverence. The album's lone original, "Is It Too Much," emerges as a whisper from the ether. Its lyric question addresses the unspeakable plainly, but it's sung as if the sisters are squarely facing one another, each completing the other's thoughts and sentences. They cover each other's grief with grief, and offer shelter and respite from the outside world -- that cannot hope to understand -- with the grain in their voices. They acknowledge a pain that can never be assuaged, just accepted as a shared transformative burden as they embrace it and one another. These two walk and stumble through that dark night, leaning together as the lyrics pour down like a river of tears. The song's question may never be answered, but its utterance is enough to guarantee another step for each. Not Dark Yet is a beacon, a glimmer of the possible. It's a stark, beautiful recording that hopefully proves something to both Lynne and Moorer: That what's here is a new beginning and that there is much more to explore.

Product Details

Release Date: 08/18/2017
Label: Silver Cross Records
UPC: 0752830443716
catalogNumber: 304437
Rank: 23114

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Allison Moorer   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Piano,Vocals
Shelby Lynne   Acoustic Guitar,Vocals
Benmont Tench   Organ,Piano,Keyboards,Wurlitzer
Davey Faragher   Bass
Don Heffington   Percussion,Drums
Michael Jerome   Percussion,Drums
Val McCallum   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Taras Prodaniuk   Bass
Ben Peeler   Pedal Steel Guitar,Electric Guitar
Doug Pettibone   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Teddy Thompson   Acoustic Guitar,Bass,Drums,Background Vocals
Erik Deutsch   Organ,Piano

Technical Credits

Merle Haggard   Composer
Shelby Lynne   Composer
Nick Cave   Composer
Jessi Colter   Composer
Scott Campbell   Engineer
Kurt Cobain   Composer
Ira Louvin   Composer
Charlie Louvin   Composer
Townes Van Zandt   Composer
Allison Moorer   Composer
Teddy Thompson   Producer
Jason Isbell   Composer
Brandon Flowers   Composer
David Keuning   Composer
Mark Stoermer   Composer
Amanda Shires   Composer
Robert Dylan   Composer

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